Bad memories fuel Buchanan
By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- It really was over as soon as it began.
The Buchanan varsity basketball team was clearly overmatched in last year's Class C Regional championship game against Kalamazoo Christian.
The Comets outscored Buchanan 21-5 in the first quarter and cruised to a 58-29 victory.
That memory still lingers in the mind of Buchanan coach Reid McBeth and 10 of the current members of the Buchanan varsity team which beat Hartford 66-33 Wednesday to set up a rematch with Kalamazoo Christian in tonight's Class C Regional championship game at Bangor.
Buchanan (13-11) returns 10 players from the 2002-03 squad while Kalamazoo Christian (18-5) has six players back from its 2002-03 team.
Of Buchanan's 10 returners, only three scored in the 2003 game. Junior guard Brian Shannon scored five points, senior center Zack Bonham scored four and junior guard Jared Rusher scored three.
The returning Comets combined for six points as senior forward Jon Cooper scored four and senior center Adam Schwabauer scored two.
The Bucks have won 22 games this season, but had to forfeit nine of those wins due to the ineligibility of sophomore Jordan Lee. The players, however, gained plenty of confidence as the wins piled up this season.
McBeth feels his team has not only gained maturity and confidence, but a defensive prowess not many teams have been able to compete with this season.
With the Comets' reputation as a team that takes good care of the basketball and is meticulous it its execution of offensive sets, McBeth would still be surprised if his team's trademark full-court press isn't instrumental in disrupting Kalamazoo Christian.
Whatever happens tonight, McBeth knows his team will at least give a better effort than last time.
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